Running a casino can be both exciting and challenging. It is also one of the best ways to make money. The challenge that most entrepreneurs face is selecting a location for their casino. Most regions do not allow the running of casinos, but if you play your cards right, it is possible to find the right location for your new casino. If you want to run a casino in India, you might run into some challenges mainly because of the way gambling laws are set in India. Below, we will look at what you need to know if you want to start a casino business in India.

Is It Possible To Run A Casino In India?

The short answer is yes, it is possible to run a casino in India, although there are some hurdles you might have to get over and some loops you might have to jump through. If you can do this, this is a very lucrative opportunity for those who have the grit to run such a challenging business.

If you do not want to go through all this, there is always the option of starting an online casino. Casinos such as Casino NetBet do really well in India as the laws for online casinos are somewhat lax and ambiguous.

The Legalities

In India, gambling is legislated using the Public Gambling act of 1867. This law prohibits the running of a casino or even participating in one outside the provisions provided for by this law. There are stiff fines for breaking this law which make it even more challenging to run a casino business. 

That said, Indian states have been given enough leeway to come up with laws that regulate gambling and establishing casinos in their regions. In India, only 3 territories allow for legal gambling out of the 7 Union Territories and 29 states that make up India.

Where Can You Start Your Casino Business?

Before 1999, there were no states that allowed land-based casinos to be established. Goa became the first Indian state to issue gambling permits. Once other states saw how much potential casinos had to boost tourism and their local economies, they followed suit. These states include Dama & Diu as well as Sikkim. 

In Goa, there are 10 casinos, with four of them floating casinos and the rest land based. The floating casinos operate on the Mandovi river. All these casinos are taxed at 10%.

Goa is also in the process of drafting new laws to standardise player experiences, address labour issues and ensure they can track players at these casinos. These laws are also meant to work alongside money laundering whose laws also came into play at the same time as the new casino laws.

In the Union Territory of Daman, there is only one onshore casino. The casino in Daman, the Deltin Daman Casino, is the largest casino in India. 

In Sikkim, there are only two casinos; Casino Mahjong and Casino Sikkim. There are talks about the opening of other casinos, but the talks are rumours at this point.

Opening A Casino In Daman Or Goa

Because of the strict prohibitions in the Goa, Daman and Diu Public Gambling Act of 1976, entrepreneurs who would like to open a casino in these regions must:

  • Set their casinos up on offshore vessels or in five-star hotels. Entrepreneurs must have permission from the government beforehand.
  • Pay Rs 5 crore up from Rs 1 crore to run their casinos.

In addition to the two requirements above, casino owners must also act within the provisions of the laws governing gambling in India.

Is it Worth It?

Yes. Running a casino in India opens up a huge customer base for your business, especially when you have casinos in other parts of the world.

Entrepreneurs just have to remember that they have to act within the law and be patient. The governments of the regions that allow gambling and casinos take a very long time to review applications as they consider the social and political ramifications of such businesses extensively. 

Starting a casino business in India can be challenging. There are so many things to keep in mind and the process can be very slow. It is worth it though, because there is a huge untapped casino market in India.

Richard is an experienced tech journalist and blogger who is passionate about new and emerging technologies. He provides insightful and engaging content for Connection Cafe and is committed to staying up-to-date on the latest trends and developments.